9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[el-i-jahy-uh k, -ak, ih-lee-jee-ak] /ˌɛl ɪˈdʒaɪ ək, -æk, ɪˈli dʒiˌæk/
adjective, Also, elegiacal
used in, suitable for, or resembling an elegy.
expressing sorrow or lamentation:
elegiac strains.
Classical Prosody. noting a distich or couplet the first line of which is a dactylic hexameter and the second a pentameter, or a verse differing from the hexameter by suppression of the arsis or metrically unaccented part of the third and the sixth foot.
an elegiac or distich verse.
a poem in such distichs or verses.
Origin of elegiac
1575-85; (< Middle French) < Latin elegīacus < Greek elegeiakós. See elegy, -ac
Related forms
elegiacally, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for elegiac
  • There should be friends and a soundtrack that is elegiac without being sad.
  • There is an elegiac note in the final point of my list.
  • In an elegiac final chapter the authors list the achievements of the city's writers and scientists.
  • Monte lengthens her antic choreographic phrases to create lyrical or even elegiac effects.
  • On the other hand, this elegiac view leaves out all the good things that go along with baseball.
  • There is an elegiac tone at the end of these memoirs.
  • elegiac fiction about the moral treachery of memory.
  • The last words of the famous tend often to be suspiciously witty, elegiac or pithy.
  • elegiac essays on aging and the embattlement of wild, unspoiled places.
  • As such, it could have taken an elegiac form, and sometimes it does.
British Dictionary definitions for elegiac


resembling, characteristic of, relating to, or appropriate to an elegy
lamenting; mournful; plaintive
denoting or written in elegiac couplets or elegiac stanzas
(often pl) an elegiac couplet or stanza
Derived Forms
elegiacally, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for elegiac

1580s, from Middle French élégiaque, from Latin elegiacus, from Greek elegeiakos, from eleigeia (see elegy). Related: Elegiacally.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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